mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

All the little ants are marching, black and red antenna waving...

Every summer, my house gets invaded by ants. It's a summer tradition, like sunburn, vacations, and shorts and sandals.

In the days before I had a cat, it wasn't a big deal - I would throw down some ant traps on the floor and the counter, and pretty soon the ants would go away. Once I got Nibbler, I realized I couldn't put the traps down, or she would probably try to eat them, since her first instinct when she encounters anything is to put it in her mouth.

The last year or two, it wasn't a huge deal - the ants would be around, but as long as I kept my kitchen relatively clean, they wouldn't stay long. I'd see them swarming around, say, a spilled blob of sweet and sour sauce, but once I cleaned it up they would be gone.

This year, though, the ants seem to be fierce. I don't know if it's some super-strain of ants, or if the economy has reduced the amount of food available, or the rain has made them grow, or what, but they are kicking my ass.

I keep seeing a trail of ants walking somewhere, and then I discover that they have found something and are eating my food. I had a jar of marshmallow fluff that they took out, an open box of knockoff Lucky Charms. Friday night I bought a box of scones and left it on the kitchen counter for breakfast - by Saturday morning it was swarming with ants and went in the trash.

I bought some ant traps yesterday and put them in places that cat can't get to but the ants have - on top of my cabinets, in my closed pantry. Hopefully they will attract and kill some of the ants. I've been trying to keep anything that might attract them away. I've been cleaning my floor and counter regularly to remove spills, rinsing dishes so that they don't go into my dishwasher, rinsing out ice-cream containers before throwing them out, buying a plastic container for my cereal. But the ants keep finding stuff - I found a bunch of them swarming around a single crumb in my sink that had failed to go down.

The traps take a few days to work, so we'll see. I haven't seen ants swarming around them the way they swarm around my food, though.

Part of me almost feels bad for killing ants - I mean, they are just trying to survive, eat, just like me. It's nothing personal. But they are eating my food, costing me money. And I want to have people over and having ants crawling around isn't something I want them to see.

So hopefully they will finally leave. Because I don't like having to plan my life around an animal that is like a millionth of my size.


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